Put it in your diary: Federation broadcast for school members on 9 June

The improvements to teachers’ working conditions and salaries achieved in negotiations for the new schools award will be commensurate to our strength and determination on the ground, Federation president Angelo Gavrielatos said on Wednesday (5 May).

“We have never gained anything out of an act of benevolence on the part of any government. It’s always come down to us.”

In a first for Federation, he addressed a live, online briefing to Federation Representatives, Women’s Contacts and Federation Workplace Committee members across the state, and announced a special, online broadcast for all school members, to be held on 9 June.

Mass attendance at this virtual, town-hall style meeting will be crucial to convey the union’s strength.

“The Gallop inquiry findings and recommendations have given us a solid platform from which to launch our campaign to achieve what’s rightfully yours, what you deserve — that’s bucketloads of respect, additional time and professional pay — but to do so won’t be easy,” Mr Gavrielatos said. “It’ll require the membership exhibiting a commitment and dedication in this campaign at a level never seen before.”

Mr Gavrielatos set a task for all Fed Reps, Women’s Contacts and Federation Workplace Committee members in schools to share the findings of the Gallop Inquiry with their P&C this term, describing it as the most important strategy for community engagement.

“There is no more natural ally for us, in this campaign to improve working conditions than parents of children in our schools.”

To create the political imperative for the government to act on the union’s demands, Federation is asking Association executive members to arrange multiple delegations to discuss the Gallop recommendations with their local state MPs. “They’ve got to be held accountable, these elected representatives, with respect to the policy settings…that are failing teachers and are failing kids.”

The most important ingredient in this strategy is membership engagement, Mr Gavrielatos said. “We have to grow union and grow membership and prepare the membership for what will be a difficult task ahead,” he also said during his address.

Annual conference, held in the winter school holidays, will determine the course of action for this campaign during terms 3 and 4. Formal award negotiations will begin in term 4.